En­RICh­ment

Who­ever you know him as Ric, Ricardo, Slick Ric, the Chur Mas­ter, you’ll have seen him in nearly ev­ery NZ Surf­ing Mag for the last 10 years, so I'm sure you all know how well the lad surfs. Yet be­hind this ex­te­rior of a pro-surfer chas­ing his dream to mak

New Zealand Surfing - - Dream Lines -

“The world as we have cre­ated it is a process of our think­ing. It can­not be changed with­out chang­ing our think­ing.”

Al­bert Einstein

"I surf in the ocean ev­ery sin­gle day, rain or shine. There is no place on earth other than my bed that I spend more time in. The Ocean is my heaven, my med­i­ta­tion, my life. It is the way I com­mu­ni­cate with peo­ple and the wave­length in which I choose to live my life. It has also been my great­est teacher of re­spect for the peo­ple around me and life in gen­eral. I want my chil­dren and grand­chil­dren to surf and ex­pe­ri­ence her beauty too. I am not ashamed to ad­mit that I have been stand­ing back, ig­nor­ing the cor­po­ra­tions (our gov­ern­ment) who want to rip apart the sea-floor and siphon money from ‘our’ whenua. I have been too busy liv­ing my life. But the other day I thought, what if one day I couldn’t live my life in the place I called home, Aotearoa? I know there is an al­ter­na­tive to the ma­jor­ity of the ex­ces­sive things I do and self-ed­u­cat­ing my­self is my way for­ward. It’s not hard. Once I opened my eyes it was as though peo­ple and even na­ture it­self were throw­ing in­for­ma­tion at me from all di­rec­tions. A door had opened and my world flooded with light and po­ten­tial. Re­duc­ing my con­sump­tion, be­com­ing aware of what I’m con­sum­ing and sup­port­ing com­pa­nies mak­ing eco-friendly prod­ucts is a start and in time, as more and more peo­ple be­come aware, I’m hop­ing that this will sway the other com­pa­nies to come up with cleaner al­ter­na­tives. The money-mak­ers still get their money but we get a cleaner en­vi­ron­ment. Boom. I am a fos­sil fuel con­sumer and I un­der­stand my cur­rent need for it in the life­style I choose to live. I can see a fu­ture with­out dirty en­ergy though and hope we (the peo­ple, cor­po­ra­tions and gov­ern­ment) can all agree to put more time and money into ex­pand­ing on ideas in re­la­tion to this. Look around. The universe is filled with en­ergy; we are en­ergy, ev­ery­where you look, en­ergy. An al­ter­na­tive I see in the short term, as we wean off this an­cient form of con­sump­tion, is if we mined our­selves for our own peo­ple and own use, to me it would be okay to take as much as 'we' needed from our whenua. If we re­spected it as a gift from Mother Earth and used it to ben­e­fit ‘our’ peo­ple, our ocean, our earth, it would be okay. When we know­ingly take too much and sell it off along with our mana to China, Amer­ica, Brazil or who­ever for what­ever the cor­po­ra­tions who own our gov­ern­ment get, we run the risks of los­ing the things we love FOR NOTH­ING. We don’t see any ben­e­fits other than a few well paid jobs, great for a few yeah, but as a na­tion, our in­equal­ity and de­funct so­cial sys­tem re­mains the same. Aotearoa doesn’t need an econ­omy based upon how many nat­u­ral as­sets we can sell off to over­seas cor­po­ra­tions, just like our brothers over the ditch. It isn’t log­i­cal for them to be role mod­els for a coun­try of our size. Once all our re­sources are gone or if some­thing was to go wrong, we would be crip­pled, leg­less, drown­ing in our own filth with­out the op­tion of a clean, green, self-sus­tain­able na­tion which I be­lieve is the fu­ture of our is­lands. We are iso­lated and it can be a good thing if we use the tools in our head. It is not too late. We have a "right" to stand up for what we love!! There is time. Who doesn't want a clean ocean to be in? It is time to turn it all around and take back the con­trol that we have in our hands. It is time to stop ig­nor­ing the facts star­ing us in the face and be the change for a bet­ter, more in­tel­li­gent, self-sus­tain­able na­tion. If you need some in­spi­ra­tion, there are rev­o­lu­tions go­ing on all over the world. Mil­lions and mil­lions of hu­man be­ings are be­com­ing aware of what’s re­ally go­ing on in their coun­tries and are stand­ing up for their birth-right to LIVE, LOVE and LAUGH on their home, our home, Planet Earth. We, the peo­ple, are the ma­jor­ity. The mo­ment ev­ery­one re­al­izes this, is the mo­ment we can start chang­ing the things we don't like. Who doesn't want peace? Who doesn't want love? Who doesn’t want equal­ity? For us as kiwi surfers, I think we need to work with our ocean and hear her cries for help first. Our oceans have been opened up for sale to the high­est bid­der and there is a lot of se­crecy and bull­shit around it. Yeah, we’ve had rigs in New Zealand be­fore but cer­tainly not at this depth and it’s our en­tire fricken coast­line we are talk­ing about. Our gov­ern­ment is ea­ger to flick them off with­out the sup­port of its coun­try and that to me is ab­so­lutely lu­di­crous and I’m not talk­ing bout da rap­per LUUDAAAAAAAAA. Like you all, I am busy. I am busy with my own dreams. I am tak­ing care of my fam­ily, mak­ing sure they are smil­ing, putting food on our ta­ble whilst I surf around the world try­ing to ac­com­plish a goal. What I can do though, at the very least, is speak on be­half of my ocean, our ocean, to my friends and any­one who will lis­ten and hope that they will spread the mes­sage. Aware­ness is the first step to change! CHURRRR."

If con­cerns about oil spills need any con­crete ev­i­dence to show the di­rect con­se­quences look no fur­ther than the Rena dis­as­ter, where beaches such as this one pic­tured here were un-sur­fa­ble by guys like Ric for over a month, even sev­eral months on the day pic­tured here there were still blobs of oil on the beach and the true ef­fect on the ma­rine and wild life will never truly be known. Photo: Cory.

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